NEW DELHI: The urban development ministry has proposed to reduce the Lutyens' Bungalow Zone in the heart of New Delhi by 5.13 sq km to 23.6 sq km, which if implemented could free up land in one of the most coveted and expensive residential areas in the country. The ministry has proposed to exclude areas like Babar Road, Bengali Market, Sundar Nagar, Jor Bagh, Panchsheel Marg and parts of diplomatic area in Chanakyapuri that were added to LBZ in 2003. When it was first demarcated in 1988, LBZ spanned 25.88 sq km. With the additions in 2003, it grew to 28.73 sq km.
"Properties will become more affordable in this area going forward as builders will be able to reduce apartment sizes, even as the per sq ft remains the same or increases, bringing the overall ticket size down," said Ashwinder Raj Singh, chief executive officer-residential services at real estate services firm JLL India.
The Delhi Urban Arts Commission has proposed to restrict LBZ close to the original boundary envisaged by the British architect Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1912 while removing the transformed, commercialised areas and modern colonies which do not bear any semblance to the original character of the area while retaining the green areas which were included in the zone in 1988.
The commission on August 12 submitted a report to the urban development ministry that included a proposal to bring back the premises of the Supreme Court of India which was excluded from LBZ in 2003. The ministry has proposed floor area ratio (FAR), or the gross floor area permitted on a site, of 20 with 12.50% ground coverage, while in the present guidelines FAR is not specified. It has proposed that basement be allowed within the building line, only for household storage and parking. The building is to be restricted to a height of 12 metres and the number of dwelling units will range from one to four, depending on the size of the plot.